A-Levels, Parkinson’s and New Bikes…

Yesterday A-level results were announced… 45% of grades, based on teacher assessments, were A* and A this year; this compares to the exam-measured 25% in 2019.

The suggestions are …standards are lower… teachers are more generous, giving students the benefit of the doubt… these results can’t be trusted.

But what if these represent the true ability of the students… exam-based assessments are unfair and inaccurate… students have made better progress at home in covid-isolation than they would have made in the classroom…

Yesterday I heard two stories about challenging assumptions:

…A man in his early 70s has Parkinson’s Disease. Together with his wife they’re asking… What do these blood tests show? Is this treatment effective or the best? Are there exercises that will improve my quality of life? Is Parkinson’s treated differently in other countries? What is the current research?

They’ve been to Italy to see specialists there; they’re proactive and positive in looking to the future.

…A child with an old bike with no brakes rode into and dented a neighbour’s car. A few days later the car owner surprised the child with a new bike that he’d bought him.

I might have been angry, contacting the child and his parents; more likely I would be grumpy, contacting my insurance company. Instead the neighbour chose to see things a different, creative, generous way.

I should appreciate those who accept those things that I complain about… or complain about those things that I accept; I should muse on those who take seriously those things I find funny… or joke about the things that I take seriously…

Musing on Isaiah 65: ‘I will create a new heaven and a new earth…  The wolf and the lamb will feed together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox.’

This picture challenges my perception of reality, normality and built in assumptions… musing further on the Jesus who troubles the comfortable and comforts the troubled…

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